A beautiful, pink marble gentleman’s house in its own parkland on the edge of a very pretty town between the sea and the mountains. Graceful bedrooms have calm colour schemes, good linen, tip-top bathrooms and elegant antiques. Some even have little balconies – throw open the windows and soak up the Languedoc’s 300 days of sunshine.
After a breakfast of pastries, breads, homemade jams, cheeses and hams (try Fuet, a Catalan cured sausage), wander through the garden with its ancient olive trees to find a spot beside the lily pond; practise your serve on the court, or just float in the pool.
It’s under a 10-minute stroll through the leafy suburbs to village life for bakeries and shops. Take the yellow train up the mountain from Villefranche for amazing views; wind your way through the Natural Park of the Catalan Pyrenees on foot for more glorious scenery.